For Mike England, painting makes more sense than anything else ....
It is the closest thing to nature, almost to the point that it becomes nature itself in the act of creating.
As we are from nature, everything we do is therefore an expression of nature.
The freedom and letting go of who we think we are allows us to express ourselves creatively or visually in this case.
Painting, as in nature has its opposite poles, order and chaos. It is the relationship between these poles that creates the harmonies, tensions and balance within the painting, regardless of subject matter. A good painting whether figurative, landscape or abstract are all challenged with the same set of criteria's.
To know whether a painting is successful or not, without having to look at a label, price tag or stamp of approval from the so-called experts.
- You must first absorb what is in front of you, and look (not with the logic of the mind) at the painting.
- Stop thinking and try to allow thoughts and questions that may arise ('what’s all this about'?,' that doesn't look right'??, 'I don't understand it', 'that’s a beautiful passage'.....etc) to pass through you, don't try to answer those questions until you have absorbed the painting, allowing your eyes to roam over the painting (where ever they wants to go).
- Use your mind to observe your emotional response to the painting.
- Through this time spent looking/absorbing you will have collected a variety of feelings and thoughts, and this will be your starting point for that particular painting.
- From this starting point, and the more you look at paintings this way, the more you will be able to start to understand what is successful as a painting and what you like in particular about certain paintings. Looking is a perspective, and the more you can expand your perspective the clearer you can see.